Compassionate Allowance - Pulmonary Atresia

For new parents, some of the most terrifying words in the English language are “congenital heart defect”. (Congenital means that one is born with it.) While many other organs such as the kidneys and lungs have a duplicate that would allow a child to survive if one were damaged, we only have one heart. If it fails, there is little chance of survival.

Fortunately, medical technology has advanced exponentially during our lifetime, and conditions which were at one time considered to be fatal can now be treated routinely. However, this is very little consolation to the parents whose precious newborn is turning blue and tenuously clinging to life.

At times like these, amid all of the crucial decisions that need to be made, life’s other responsibilities continue on. If there are other children in the home, arrangements need to be made for their care. The dog needs to be fed. The lawn needs to be mowed. And unfortunately, bills still need to be paid. These are the times which we, as Americans, can be grateful for Social Security Disability Income benefits.

In the not-so-distant past, the process of applying for and receiving disability benefits was long and difficult. For many claimants, it still is; nearly 3 out of every 4 applications submitted are denied. While these safeguards are in place to prevent the fraud which has become so rampant, the unintended consequence has been the difficulty of accessing those funds for those who legitimately need them.

Seeing the need to make disability benefits more accessible to those with some debilitating conditions, the Social Security Administration (SSA) developed the Compassionate Allowance program. This new system created a list of illnesses and conditions (totaling 100 to date) which by their very nature lead to the need for disability benefits. As a result, claims for patients with one of these conditions can be processed in an expedited manner.

If you have been diagnosed with one of these conditions, it is imperative that you begin the application process as soon as possible in order to minimize any potential delays in receiving your benefits.

Pulmonary Atresia – Condition and Symptoms

In very simple terms, the heart is a muscle. It is divided into four sections; the top two are the right and left atrium, while the bottom two are the right and left ventricles. Through a series of exquisitely-timed contractions in different parts of the heart muscle, blood is sent to the lungs to be oxygenated, sent out to the body to deliver the oxygen, and then back to the heart to start the process all over again. Beating an average of 72 times per minute, an adult heart completes this process over 100,000 times daily.

Controlling the direction of the flow of blood within the heart and to the blood vessels is a series of valves, which are small flaps which act like a one-way door allowing blood to flow in one direction but not the other. The valve which controls the flow of blood into the pulmonary artery (which allows blood to go to the lungs to be oxygenated) is cleverly known as the pulmonary valve. In some infants, this valve does not develop properly; this condition is known as pulmonary atresia.

Since Pulmonary Atresia is a congenital malformation, symptoms will usually be present immediately after delivery. The most obvious symptom is a bluish-gray skin tone.

In a child born with Pulmonary Atresia, the blood is unable to return to the lungs in order to receive more oxygen. Left untreated, Pulmonary Atresia can lead to death as the body’s need for oxygen goes unmet.

Because the term Pulmonary Atresia refers to a group of defects of varying levels of severity, depending on the impact to the right ventricle and the pulmonary artery. While Pulmonary Atresia can usually be treated with surgery, the level of success of the operation may be dependent upon the impact to the surrounding structures.

Filing for Social Security Disability with Pulmonary Atresia

If you are the parent or guardian of a child born with Pulmonary Atresia, it may be helpful to know that your child automatically qualifies for Social Security Disability benefits, because PA has been determined by the SSA to meet the guidelines for a Compassionate Allowance. In spite of that fact, you would do well to have your case evaluated by a Social Security Disability attorney.

While the approval process has been streamlined for qualifying conditions, it is still of the utmost importance that the application paperwork be complete and accurate. An experienced disability attorney can help you avoid the common mistakes that could result in a delay of your claim.

Your Pulmonary Atresia Social Security Disability case

If your child was born with Pulmonary Atresia, you can find a bit of peace in the knowledge that he or she will definitely qualify for Social Security Disability benefits. You can add to that peace by having your case reviewed by a Social Security Disability lawyer.

Please click here for more information about hiring a disability attorney in your area.